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you can't outsource your soul work

Sunday Nov 18, 2018

Mission Possible

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Finding Jordan

From my groundbreaking book, An Artist Empowered:

One of my preeminent and recurring realizations is this: that annoying self-defeating voice inside my head, the inner critic, is no stranger. I am talking to myself as you are talking to yourself.

Until you witness and diffuse this demonic-prone aspect of the psyche—ego—you are prey to the fear and doubt that it feeds upon. Aware of this codependent relationship, you confront and then extrapolate to understand a fundamental dynamic: if I were to allow rejection (or even something truly serious) to defeat me, then I have lost faith in my mission.

When the mission is clear, there is no ambiguity. Failure is when I abandon my gift. In turn, rejection exacts a degree of impact proportionate to the artist’s lack of purpose.

Rejection is a word, a reaction to action, not an eternal truth, or a life sentence.

Saturday Oct 13, 2018

Sing like a bird

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Meditation

From my book, An Artist Empowered:

When I asked Deepak Chopra what he would say to each artist about persevering over rejection, he told me this:

Every artist in the world should memorize and store this answer indelibly in their consciousness. Rumi, the 13th century Sufi mystic and artist said: ‘I want to sing like birds sing, not worrying who listens or what they think.

Sunday Sep 30, 2018

Is it art?

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Traversing Dimensions

From my book, An Artist Empowered:

Is it art because I say so, or because they say so?

To be seen you must be bold. An underlying and profound reason for having difficulty with rejection is that we are, to a significant extent, products of social conditioning.

We grow up with a skewed perspective of what is already a narrow view of the world. We are mostly judged by our possessions, which feeds a consumer driven society into excess, into gluttony, into mindless growth, and into the relentless worship of materialism.

If you are insecure about your inherent value as an artist, then even trappings of material success won’t soothe your anxiety. The upside is that you can expand your perception—at any time of your choosing—to see a more unadulterated worldview without the blinders imposed by yourself and the powers that be.

The truth isn’t out there; it is inside of you.

Friday Sep 14, 2018

Innovation Redux

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Opening Night

From my book, An Artist Empowered:

I don’t know of any innovation in art that was generated by a grant or a fellowship.

I’m not referring to ideas or concepts; I am talking about innovation.

Tuesday Jul 31, 2018

Value Your Work

purple haze: ode to jimi hendrix
Purple Haze: Ode to Jimi Hendrix

From my book, An Artist Empowered:

Don’t worry about the rejections. Everybody that’s good has gone through it. Don’t let it matter if your works are not ‘accepted’ at once. The better or more personal you are the less likely they are of acceptance.

Just remember that the object of painting pictures is not simply to get them in exhibitions. It is all very fine to have your pictures hung, but you are painting for yourself, not for the jury. I had many years of rejections.

—Robert Henri